Skip to main content

tv   Way Too Early  MSNBC  December 20, 2012 2:30am-3:00am PST

2:30 am
worst tragedies in our memory, the country deserves folks to be willing to compromise on behalf of the greater good. that was president obama yesterday at the white house looking to jump start negotiations on fiscal cliff. following what's been a very tough time for so many americans. good morning, i'm mark halperin and this is "way too early." thanks for being up with us today. we have a lot of news to talk about on this thursday, including new fallout on that scathing report on the state department's, quote, systematic failures of protecting u.s. diplomats in benghazi. plus, nasty weather bearing down as millions of travelers prepare to hit the road for the holidays. we'll have the latest forecast there. first, let's get to the news here in new york city. five days out from christmas, 12 days away from the fiscal cliff deadline that could potentially cripple the economy. house republicans are expected to vote on plan "b." that's speaker john boehner's safety net proposal that would
2:31 am
maintain bush era tax rates for everyone making a million dollars or less. >> about providing and working with us on a balanced approach. tomorrow the house will pass legislation to make permanent tax relief for nearly every american. 99.81% of the american people. then the president will have a decision to make. he can call on senate democrats to pass that bill or he can be responsible for the largest tax increase in american history. >> well, president obama has threatened to veto boehner's measure and he said republicans need to drop any personal grudges they might have to do what's best for the country. >> they keep on finding ways to say no as opposed to finding ways to say yes. and i don't know how much of that just has to do with, you know, it is very hard for them to say yes to me.
2:32 am
but, you know, at some point they've got to take me out of it. and think about their voters. and think about what's best for the country. this is not a situation where i'm, you know, unwilling to compromise. this is not a situation where i'm trying to rub their face in anything. i think anybody who looks at this objectively would say that coming off my election, i have met them at least halfway. in order to get something done for the country. if you just pull back from the immediate political battles. if you kind of peel off the partisan war paint, then we should be able to get something done. >> look on the one hand those dueling press conferences suggest the two sides are at stalemate. on the other hand they do have proposals on the table that are
2:33 am
the that far apart. what's going to unstick it is the big question. a problem is if both sides while they're willing to give ground are facing pressure from within their own parties. yesterday house minority leader nancy pelosi became one of the latest voices to speak out except except skeptically about her own party's proposals. >> speak out against. i'm not thrilled with the president's proposal. it's what it is in order to save the day. but that doesn't mean that we all identify with every aspect of it. >> the other big story in washington and around the nation, in the wake of the newtown shootings, president obama says gun regulation will be, quote, a central issue of his second term. vice president joe biden has been tapped by the president to lead the effort and work with cabinet members on making recommendations before the president's state of the union address. the choice of biden makes sense given his extensive anti-crime portfolio as a long-time delaware senator.
2:34 am
he helped to pass a ban on assault weapons in 149. he also received an "f" rating from the nra. he acknowledged that gun legislation alone would not solve the problem. >> we know this is a complex issue that stirs deeply-held passions and political divides. as i said on sunday night, there's no law or set of laws that can prevent every senseless act of violence in our society. we're going to need to work on making access to mental health care at least as easy as access to a gun. we need to look more closely at a culture that all too often glorifies guns and violence. and any actions we must take must begin inside the home and inside our hearts. but the fact that this problem is complex can no longer be an excuse for doing nothing. >> later in that same press
2:35 am
conference, president obama offered a sharp response when he was asked why his administration has mostly stayed away from the subject of gun control until now. >> this is not the first issue -- the first incident of horrific gun violence of your four years. where have you been? >> well, here's where i've been, jake. i've been president of the united states, dealing with the worst economic crisis since the great depression. an auto industry on the verge of collapse, two wars. i don't think i've been on vacation. and so, you know, i think all of us have to do some reflection on how we prioritize what we do here in washington. this should be a wakeup call for all of us. to say that if we are not getting right the need to keep our children safe, then nothing else matters. and it's my commitment to make
2:36 am
sure that we do everything we can to keep our children safe. a lot of things are involved in that, vacation. making sure they got decent health care and a good education, making sure that their parents have jobs, those are all relevant as well. those aren't just sort of side issues. >> as the obama administration makes a push to curb gun violence and and it appears many americans are open to stricter law, according to a cnn research poll, over 60% of those support a ban on semiautomatic weapons. as pete williams reports, the gun lobby has other ideas. >> reporter: in camden, new jersey, a record-breaking 1,100 guns turned into the police buyback after the newtown shooting. some saying they wanted the guns out of the house. >> it won't be easy, but that can't be an excuse not to try. >> reporter: among possibilities, banning
2:37 am
military-style guns called assault weapons and high capacity gun clips or magazines. stopping private gun sales without background checks. the gun show loophole. confirming a permanent director for atf, the nation's gun law enfonser, making it easier to get access to mental health care and changing a culture that glorifies gun violence. democrats are pushing to bring back the assault weapons ban that ran from 1994 to 2004. they want to ban guns like the bush master xm-15, the type fired in the newtown shooting. some studies say the number of mass shootings has stayed about the same over the past three decades, an average of 20 a year, even with the previous ban in place. >> overall, assault weapon ban is a good idea. it will take a bite out of crime, ordinary crime but when it comes to imagination murder, maybe just a nibble. >> reporter: on the nra's internet webcast last night, the hosts made their position clear. >> these gun-free zones are not
2:38 am
the answers. people are left as sitting ducks. adam lanza knew he was going to be able to do what he wanted to do. >> reporter: some walmart stores say there's such a run on semiautomatic rifles they're running out. >> that was nbc's pete williams reporting. although the motives in the newtown shooting are still unclear, reports that the gunman may have been upset about his mother's plans to enroll him in a special school outside connecticut. funerals continue today for the victims of that terrible accident. there's new fallout over the attack on the u.s. consulate in benghazi that left four americans dead. four state department officials, including the security chief have left their jobs under pressure. those changes come less than 24 hours after an independent review blamed the department for what it described as grossly inadequate security lapses, both before and during the september 11th attack. while secretary of state hillary clinton has said she's ultimately responsible, the chairman of the investigating panel suggests the security lapses occurred further down in
2:39 am
the chain of command. >> we fixed it at the assist and the secretary level, which is in our view, the appropriate place to look, where the decisionmaking in fact take place, where if you like the rubber hits the road. >> the secretary of state has been very clear about taking responsibility here. it was, from my perspective, not reasonable in terms of her having a specific level of knowledge. that was very specifically resident in her staff and over time. certainly didn't bring that to her attention. >> secretary clinton was expected to appear at an open hearing this afternoon on benghazi attack. her recent concussion sidelined her, leaving her two top deputies to testify today instead. she's out of sight but not out of mind for republican senators who insisting she appear herself on capitol hill at some point before her departure from the
2:40 am
job she holds and before there are confirmation hearings for her inspected successor, senator john kerry. robert bork died wednesday morning. he was solicitor general during the watergate scandal. he serve as a senior judicial adviser to mitt romney's presidential campaign. he's best known for his failed nomination to the supreme court after president ronald reagan in 1987 put him up for the high court. liberals at that point launched an all-out campaign to oppose bork, focusing on his views on the constitution and individual liberty. now of course one of his great legacies, the term getting borked. that was coined after his failed confirmation process and it's now used to refer to any nominee who is rejected after suffering a political assault. robert bork was 85 years old. business news, the dow closed down nearly 100 points. for more on this and the rest
2:41 am
today's business headlines, let's check in with cnbc's karen cho live in london. karen? >> good morning. we are seeing quite a bit of action out there as investors read the late e from congress. we're sitting up for a slight tick higher in u.s. markets. a bit of a recovery trade after that sell-off yesterday. one stock we're keeping focus on is the stock exchange. it's ticked higher by 12%. this is based on reports that rival operator intercontinental exchange could be about to make a play for the nyse. this may feel like an old story. it is the second time around, about two years ago ic teamed up with the nasdaq in a bid for the nyse. this was blocked because regulators were concerned about all stock offers being under one roof in new york. according to sources, deal could be worth about $8 billion. that would constitute about a 37% premium to wednesday's closing price. but stand by for more detail on
2:42 am
this possibly today, mark. >> karen, thank you. as always, let us know why you're awake and watching. shoot us an e-mail at or tweet me @markhalperin. still ahead on "way too early," the jets find one possible solution to the whole sanchez/tebow drama. dump them both. it appears gang green is ready to carry out a quarterback shuffle new york style. plus, it will be a nasty commute as a winter blizzard rips across the midwest and towards new england. bill karins will have a check on the forecast when "way too early" comes right back here. ♪ if it wasn't for you
2:43 am
2:44 am
♪ don't know what i'd do ♪ i'd have nothing to prove [ male announcer ] introducing the celebration diamond collection. zales is the diamond store. let love shine. you know it can be hard toe. lbreathe, and how that feels.e, copd includes chronic bronchitis and emphysema. spiriva helps control my copd symptoms
2:45 am
by keeping my airways open for 24 hours. plus, it reduces copd flare-ups. spiriva is the only once-daily inhaled copd maintenance treatment that does both. spiriva handihaler tiotropium bromide inhalation powder does not replace fast-acting inhalers for sudden symptoms. tell your doctor if you have kidney problems, glaucoma, trouble urinating, or an enlarged prostate. these may worsen with spiriva. discuss all medicines you take, even eye drops. stop taking spiriva and seek immediate medical help if your breathing suddenly worsens, your throat or tongue swells, you get hives, vision changes or eye pain, or problems passing urine. other side effects include dry mouth and constipation. nothing can reverse copd. spiriva helps me breathe better. (blowing sound) ask your doctor about spiriva. i'd like to thank eating right, whole grain, multigrain cheerios! mom, are those my jeans?
2:46 am
[ female announcer ] people who choose more whole grain tend to weigh less than those who don't. multigrain cheerios ho, ho, ho, so lovely, the rockefeller center christmas tree. beautiful weather in new york right now. we get a check on your weather from nbc star meteorologist bill karins where things are not looking all that great as we go westward. >> midwest, people hoping to get their newspapers this morning and unable to get them. it's one of those mornings you're not going to be traveling, kansas, nebraska, iowa, up through wisconsin. those are the worst of it, chicago, rainy weather, same for st. louis. later today, the winds howl from the north. that brings in the cold air. chicago, just rain this morning. may even see a couple thunderstorms. later this afternoon in chicago, we change over to a burst of snow maybe picking up 2 inches.
2:47 am
blizzard warnings still in effect again. the worst of it is iowa. winds are now 40 to 50 miles per hour, back through kansas city, wichita, omaha. that's where the highways are the worst, especially interstate 70 and 80, down around kansas city and topeka. the white is the snow. it's snowing good, des moines, dubuque through wisconsin. there's also the south side of this storm. i don't want to ignore the people to the south of that. that's where we'll be dealing with severe weather. as far as the snowfall totals, 6 to 12. it's the blowing and the drifting of the snow. wisconsin, areas from milwaukee northward could get the worst of this. we could be picking up 6 to 10 inches of snow. it will be windy and blowing behind that. a new tornado watch, if you're down there in mess miss, alabama, panhandle of florida, a chance of tornadoes until about noon today. if you're in the mobile area, you now have a tornado that's possibly heading your way in 15 minutes from now, mobile, alabama, heads up to you and your friends down there.
2:48 am
we're not so concerned about deadly tornadoes or anything like that. it only takes one, i guess. >> on the snow, it's the blowing and the drifting. >> sideways snow. >> bill, thank you so much. we go from weather to sports, my favorite transition. a great quarterback controversy, the new york jets planning to rid themselves of both mark sanchez and tim tebow at the end of the season. bill karins says good riddance. on the heels of the news that mcelroy will get the start on sunday. the jets are done with sanchez and tebow. they reportedly will explore all options to dump the two quarterbacks, including maybe trading them. good luck with that. accord tock a team source, the typically poised tebow looked furious upon receiving the news that mcelroy instead of tebow will be the starter. >> you know, i respect the coach's decision. obviously i want to be out there playing, so i don't necessarily agree with it.
2:49 am
when something like that happens, i do my best to support greg and support the team and get him ready to play and prepare like a starter in case i need to go in there. >> as a player, even though you my not agree, you have to, you know, you have respect for them and the organization. you just do the best you can. all you can ask for and all you want is a chance to play the game you love and help this team win football games. you know, that's all i want. >> typically understated rex ryan said he's considering keeping all three quarterbacks active for send's game against the chargers. knicks and nets facing off at madison square garden. carmelo anthony back after sitting out two games with a sprained ankle. second quarter, anthony making his presence felt, drains the three. the knicks go into the second half of with a four-point lead. the nets take the lead in the
2:50 am
third quarter but felton finds tyson chandler, two-standed stuff. two points there. the knicks back in it. fourth quarter, they pull away. jason kidd finds anthony on the fast break. he hits the three from behind the arc. the knicks take it 100-86. finally, a small semblance of normalcy returning to newtown high school, in the gy game the girls basketball, first sporting event for the town since friday's shooting at sandy hook elementary. the newtown nighthawks played the panthers. the girl's team won by 20 points, 64-44. great moment for the town and lots to do before christmas to get spirits back up there. coming up at the top of the hour on "morning joe," live in washington, dueling news conferences were not pretty yesterday but the big question is can the president and speaker boehner find a way to strike a pre-christmas deal? the "morning joe" crew will knock that around. when we come back here, we'll
2:51 am
huddle around the water cooler. bill cosby is trying to settle an age-old debate. which one of cliff huxtable's sweater was the absolute best? we'll show you some contenders when "way too early" comes right back. [ male announcer ] when it comes to the financial obstacles military families face, we understand. at usaa, we know military life is different. we've been there. that's why every bit of financial advice we offer is geared specifically to current and former military members and their families. [ laughs ] dad! dad! [ applause ] ♪ [ male announcer ] life brings obstacles. usaa brings advice. call or visit us online. we're ready to help.
2:52 am
2:53 am
we told you at the top the
2:54 am
show, that president obama announced yesterday that gun regulation would be a central issue in his second term agenda. he'll likely face opposition from the powerful gun lobby, including the nra. tell your friends according to the sunlight foundation, more than half of the new congress that convenes next month, 51% received funds from the nra's political action committee at some point in their political careers. 47% of the new congress got money from the nra during their most recent election campaigns. enough with the real news, now we gather around the proverbial nbc water cooler to talk some fashion. with christmas just five days away if you haven't already done it, you need to put on some of the festive holiday sweaters. they're so ugly that they're very cool. all the sweater hype has the grandfather of ugly culture sweater, bill cosby feeling nostalgic. he asked his fans to vote for their favorite cliff huxtable
2:55 am
knit worrying during the cosby show days. there's the woven brown tone knit with the extra chunky black cuffs. the two-toned gray and baby blue v-neck sweater vest with the touch of pink in the center and the grandpa shawl collar cardigan. our overwhelming favorite here is the brick red and cobalt blue basket weave style knit. vote for your favorite. i suggest you vote for that one at i didn't get quite the same appreciation just last month when i had donned a sweater hoon ott set of "morning joe." >> i was going out on the campaign trail. >> is in your campaign trail gear? >> this is the garb. >> it's all right. >> he's not wearing sweats. >> is it a fleece sweater. >> you are on the part of the city without power. no problem. >> that was cgi.
2:56 am
i was wearing a suit that day. when it comes to beauty queens, the united states is back on top, usa, usa. last night -- >> miss universe 2012 is usa! olivia culpo is the winner. miss universe. >> last night, miss usa, olivia culpo was crowned miss universe. the 20-year-old boston university sophomore reclaimed the crown for the united states from angola, beating out 88 other women from 6 continents at the las vegas competition. not your typical pageant queen. she's a star cellist who has played with yo-yo ma, donald trump is the co-owner of the miss universe organization. congratulations to all of us. ben affleck was on capitol hill yesterday, testifying about the problems facing war-torn
2:57 am
congo. it wasn't just humanitarian issues in the spotlight. speculation is swirling about a possible senate run for affleck after he met with senator john kerry. kerry, of course, is from affleck's native massachusetts. and he is -- kerry is speculated front-runner to replace hillary clinton as secretary of state. affleck is staying quiet about whether he's interested in the job. when politico asked him to comment on rumor on wednesday, he refused to comment saying, quote, that's not what i'm here to talk about. senator affleck. huh. still ahead on "way too early," why are you awake? your tweets, texts and e-mails are next. "morning joe" live from washington, d.c. is just moments away. l ♪ ♪ you have a heart of gold [ male announcer ] vera wang love. the new diamond bridal collection from vera wang. exclusively at zales.
2:58 am
[ male announcer ] the way it moves.
2:59 am
the way it cleans. everything about the oral-b power brush is simply revolutionary. oral-b power brushes oscillate, rotate and even pulsate to gently loosen and break up that sticky plaque with more brush movements than manual brushes and even up to 50% more than leading sonic technology brushes for a superior clean. oral-b power brushes. go to for the latest offers.